a whirlwind of a post, but would really appreciate some help. (pocd)

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ZG1

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hi guys. kind of at my wit's end here. this is gonna be super long, apologies.

i'm a female in my early 20's, and have been struggling for so long now. i'm currently on 75mg of zoloft (though tapering off because it's done nothing for me) and i am not seeing a therapist, mainly due to the fear of them labeling me as a 'p'.

i've had ocd since i was a very young child, and have struggled with almost every form imaginable. when i was 6, i couldn't tell my parents i loved them because my brain told me 'what if that isn't true? you can't lie.' when i was 7, i couldn't cross my lowercase t's because they looked like actual crosses and i felt it was so wrong. years go by, i battled with these and so many more (hand washing, checking, just right, hocd, rocd, confession) and while those were terrifying and difficult, none of them come close to the pocd i have now.

if you would've asked me a little over a year ago if i was a pedophile, i would have laughed in your face at such an absurd question. i have never been attracted to children. even in the state i'm in now, i KNOW i'm not attracted to them. but it gets so much more complicated than that and my brain is just... tired.

a little over a year ago, a thought popped up in my head. i had a high school class with a freshmen boy as a senior, and we became friends. i had a crush on him then, and he had a crush on me. suddenly, my brain went into OVERDRIVE. i was convinced i was going to jail, that i was a predator, that if anyone around me found out i would be shunned. i spent MONTHS researching laws and peoples' opinions on this. i felt nothing short of a monster. when i could be convinced to leave the house, i would start crying because i felt unworthy of being around others.

after 9 long months, that passed. but only because a new obsession had popped into my mind!

this one concerned false memories about a much younger friend i had, and sent me down another rabbit hole. i was convinced i had liked them and talked sexually with them, when i had absolutely no memory of doing so. i panicked and went through every single message i could find with them multiple times. even after finding nothing, i still was brainwashed.

and what do you know, after a couple of months, this obsession switched.

whilst on an adult website, i saw a potentially disturbing ad. the more i looked at it, the more i couldn't figure out what it was. i carried on with my business and went back to check it again after. i ended up just closing out the tab because i was so stressed and couldn't come to a solid conclusion.

i eventually reported the ad after finding it again (which took me hours) at this point, my ocd had convinced me i was sick for possibly seeing a disturbing image, and being able to brush it off. i panicked once more, and began searching to see if anyone else had seen the same ad.

unfortunately, this led to me stumbling upon (very pixelated, and the user was trying to report it, but still) cp. this shook me up to the point of tears, and when telling my mother about it later i broke down. i still can't get those horrific images out of my brain.

this incident THEN reminded me of something that happened in my childhood. (i told you this was a mess, i'm so sorry!)

i don't like to talk about this and it still pops into my head every now and then. i used to be able to push it away, but not these days.

when i was 10-11, i realized i could find 'sex' on limewire. if you're not familiar with limewire, it was basically an application that allowed users to share files. this led to some very disturbing content being shared, including cp, which i ended up finding. as a curious kid, i didn't realize what i was seeing, and watched it just like every other porn video i downloaded. it was only when i got older did i realize what it had been.

my ocd latched onto this. i began to think, should i have known better? am i sick? i even began to convince myself i had viewed that kind of material later on in life, when i had no memory of doing so. i scoured websites and forums trying to find stories similar to mine. i just needed reassurance that i wasn't an awful human, that it was a childhood mistake, that i didn't know any better. i get weirded out by typing the full term 'cp' out into those search engines, so i'd usually use different words or phrases to try and find discussions on it.

this is where i am now.

while searching these things, trying to find topics about them for reassurance, a thought popped into my head.

'what if you find actual cp?'

my heart began to race. i felt a STRONG arousal. i don't believe this was a groinal response, and i don't want to paint it that way. i wasn't checking for arousal, i haven't really 'checked' since my hocd. it felt almost identical, if not identical, to my normal arousal. i scrolled faster down the page, trying to get to the end. in the moment it felt like i didn't care if i found it, or maybe even wanted to find it. but of course nothing came up, who would label cp so someone could find it that way? it's also a super mainstream website which would (presumably) take something like that down immediately.

here's where it gets even trickier.

i know people might come in here and try to assure me it was a groinal response. it might have been, i don't know. but what i DO know is that i have been getting aroused by stressful, wrong situations since i was a teen. i DO know that cp does not 'get me off', nor am i attracted to it. this is fairly obvious by how shook up i was from seeing it on twitter that day.

i think what aroused me is the fact that it is wrong, taboo (i feel sick typing this out) i have felt this way in stressful situations since i was a young teen. if i'm supposed to be somewhere and running out of time, i can orgasm in seconds. i used to call people i didn't wanna talk to (including 911) and the risk of them picking up would also allow me to finish instantly.

but i feel disgusting for it. i hate this, i hate myself. what kind of person get aroused to the thought of finding something like that? even if it isn't the content itself that's making me feel that way? while it was happening, i told myself that my ocd was gonna give me hell for it later. and of course it did, why wouldn't it?! that's abhorrent and i don't even know what to say. i don't want to feel that way. i wish i could erase my emotions. WHY did i have to feel aroused??

i want to say more but i'm so tired and i don't know if i can go on any longer. i leave my house once every few months. i haven't seen my friends in almost two years. they used to mean the world to me. i'm an absolute shell of the 'normal' girl i used to be. please, what do i do? am i a monster? tell me the truth.
 
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EstherRose94

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YOU. ARE. NOT. A. MONSTER.

You are such a normal person. Everything you said makes me sure that you are. I’m thinking you must me very smart to have those wheels turning so fast in your brain. Do you have an Einstein level IQ? Are you in school?

If you put this mental energy towards work or a passion, you will do such amazing things. I know it’s easier said than done but over time you will learn to do that.

That arousal in response to stress thing sounds normal to me. Also, there’s no way your ten year old self would have known better.

Also also, at my high school a senior girl told her freshman boyfriend she was infertile, had unprotected sex with him, and had his baby. THAT was kinda shady. Your little crush/ thinking a guy is cute was not, it was innocent.
 
Z

ZG1

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esther, thank you so much. your message made me chuckle! my brain does seem to go a million miles per hour these days, lol. i'm not in school currently (have some family issues that have kinda prevented me from doing so) but i'm looking to enroll soon, hopefully! i know these things would be good for me as i very rarely leave the house and pretty much spend all my time on ocd.

just typing that whole thing out made me feel a lot better. it's hard to keep stuff bottled up sometimes! and it's really nice to know that at least one person doesn't think i'm horrific and twisted, lol. i usually cope pretty well with my ocd but this one is sure beating me up. the whole freshman/senior thing really sent me down a rabbit hole for awhile. i came across all these posts calling seniors predators and i about lost my mind! i understand in some circumstances it can definitely be questionable but my intentions were never to harm anyone.

thank you so much again for your kind words. (and for your patience to sift through my ramblings!) i've spent a very long time thinking i'm undeserving of anything but maybe i can feel differently for a bit now :)
 
Hopeful313

Hopeful313

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Hi @zodiacgirl and :welcome: to the forum.

I do suffer from a different type of POCD that has nothing to do with sexuality. It’s such a draining process and the rush of thoughts and horror is unbearable. I am really sorry that you are struggling.

You are a very smart person and very aware of your thoughts. Even people with no mental health issues have those kind of thoughts. You over analyze your thoughts and I assure you that you are the farthest from being a pedophile or a monster.

Have you spoken to a psychiatrist or a therapist? And are you on any medication?

I hope you feel better soon.
 
Z

ZG1

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hopeful, thank you for the welcome! :)

i’m so sorry to hear you struggle as well. i know just how exhausting this disorder can be, some days i almost don’t have the energy to breathe!

you all are so kind, i might tear up! i wasn’t expecting anyone to answer the novel i wrote, lol.

i am on 75mg of zoloft, though tapering off of it as it did nothing/might have been making me worse. i haven’t seen any therapists (kinda nervous to do so) but my doctor really wants me to. i think it’s just a matter of pushing myself to go and i’ll get over (or just deal with) my anxiety about it. i don’t normally open up to people so it’s a bit hard for me!
 
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EstherRose94

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I’ve been there and written similar novels so I totally understand how scary it is but it really means you’re the opposite: you care very much about being a good person. And you are a good person.

Ugh the trial and error of meds is no fun. I take Zoloft now but it’s the third one I tried and the first two might have made things worse too. keep looking and something will work.

Try to busy yourself with books or crosswords or something during the day if you can. Make a routine of some sort for yourself. It will help a lot.

And give therapy a shot. I started going regularly last fall and it helps a lot. I was scared too but by the third visit I was just rambling on and on, no filter. It feels good to talk to someone.
 
Z

ZG1

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ahh yes the meds are frustrating :( i got really discouraged even though this is my first try. the constant doctor visits to change dosages/check up on me took a toll lol. i’ll definitely give another one a go, though! my mom is on prozac for her ocd and that seems to be doing her well.

i wholeheartedly agree about the routine. before this all went into chaos, i had a decent one going. and i do enjoy crosswords actually! i have a few books lined up too i’ve been meaning to read, suppose now is as good a time as ever to start these things!

i know i’d like therapy if i could just get over that hurdle of going. i have social anxiety around new people, but good lord do i ramble on when i feel comfortable LOL. i’ll look around again for a therapist familiar with ocd :)
 
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EstherRose94

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Yeah I had told my GP I was scared I wouldn’t know what to say and she was just like “it isn’t a date”

Haha so I was like alrighty then good point I guess I’ll go
 
Hopeful313

Hopeful313

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hopeful, thank you for the welcome! :)

i’m so sorry to hear you struggle as well. i know just how exhausting this disorder can be, some days i almost don’t have the energy to breathe!

you all are so kind, i might tear up! i wasn’t expecting anyone to answer the novel i wrote, lol.

i am on 75mg of zoloft, though tapering off of it as it did nothing/might have been making me worse. i haven’t seen any therapists (kinda nervous to do so) but my doctor really wants me to. i think it’s just a matter of pushing myself to go and i’ll get over (or just deal with) my anxiety about it. i don’t normally open up to people so it’s a bit hard for me!
I’ve read through longer novels 😁. Don’t worry about that. We all have done it because we find an opportunity to vent and someone to listen.

On the medication, I am on Escitalopram and my intrusive thoughts were completely gone in a matter of a month. I am either having a relapse or built intolerance to it for the past three days. I may need to up my dose but I was doing extremely well on it.

You may need to try therapy and see how it help.
 
Z

ZG1

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Yeah I had told my GP I was scared I wouldn’t know what to say and she was just like “it isn’t a date”

Haha so I was like alrighty then good point I guess I’ll go
hahah that’s good advice! i’m one of those people who always worries about pleasing others, so kinda needed to hear that.

thank you again, hopeful! :) i’ll definitely discuss meds/therapy when i can get an appointment with my doctor in. for a while i couldn’t tell if it was helping or not. but then i started to have even worse ocd episodes, and noticed i would feel slightly better when i would forget to take the meds for a day. probably should have changed over sooner, just been in one of those ruts!
 
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EstherRose94

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Yeah Im the same with the people pleasing haha. but it’s their job to guide your through ☺
 
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FrightenedbyEverything

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I know exactly how you feel. It is terrifying and if you make one little probable mistake mentally, it feels like there's no hope for you. Like you're gonna end up registered and there's nothing you can do. It always helps to get your feelings out there, even if it hurts. I can't offer advice but I promise. you're not alone in this POCD thing. :grouphug:
 
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Tomorrows a new day

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Some great vids about POCD on Youtube
 

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